Prominent peer claims expenses race bias


A prominent peer voiced concerns that inconsistent investigation procedures were due to race bias after three peers were suspended from the House of Lords over their expenses claims.

Crossbencher Lord Bhatia, and Labour members Baroness Uddin and Lord Paul were accused in Privilege and Conduct Select Committee reports of designating their main home as properties in which they didn’t live, thereby enabling them to claim overnight expenses.

Mayoral win: Rahman trounces Labour


In what can only be described as an extraordinary election result, the hounded and ousted former Labour Mayoral candidate Lutfur Rahman swept to victory as the new mayor for Tower Hamlets.

With barely a few weeks to campaign as an independent candidate Rahman and his many supporters took on Labour and won by a huge margin winning 51.76% of the vote.

Questions will now be asked by the Labour hierarchy, how did they get themselves in such a mess? How did they find themselves yet again paying scant regard to their largely Bengali constituency?

José Gutiérrez: new deportee mistreatment case


A second investigation was launched this month into allegations of the mistreatment of a Columbian asylum seeker by G4S security guards.

The investigation follows the death of 46-year-old, Angolan refugee Jimmy Mubenga, just weeks ago.   Mr Mubenga collapsed and died during a deportation at Heathrow airport, handled by G4S security guards.

Poorest hit by welfare cuts


The announced spending cuts were today described as the deepest since the second World War and analysts say families will be the hardest hit.

Britain’s leading independent economic analysts the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) declared ‘families with children as the "biggest losers" .

The independent think tank said that ‘the less well off would be proportionately the hardest hit’, and that the £7bn of benefit cuts would reinforce the "regressive" nature of the government's plans to tackle the deficit.

Mothafar Assar: last rapper in Gaza


Gaza isn’t the place you might expect to find a rapper, not least one as popular as Mothafar Assar, being a music artist in this part of the world has its own unique challenges.

Life isn’t easy for a struggling artist at the best of times and Mothafar manages to stay keen while dealing with the political realities of the Palestine – Israel situation.

He was approached by the Israeli rights group Peace Now to work on a song with another Israeli rapper but decided to withdraw for fear of how he’d be viewed and the possibility of arrest:

Spending Review: key measures


Yesterday the Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne announced details of the cuts the coalition government intends to make to public spending to bring down the deficit which resulted from the recent world wide recession and banking crisis.

Against the backdrop of a growing campaign to defend public services from severe cuts the Chancellor announced the following:

Tower Hamlets corruption must end


On the eve of the historical Mayoral elections in Tower Hamlets OBV calls on political parties to end the long standing political corruption that has blighted the area.

During a live TV hustings debate with the Mayoral candidates - organised by OBV and Channel S - they all concluded that political irregularities, on an unacceptable level, still exist.

The Liberal democrat candidate, John Griffiths stated he witnessed in one house alone, five voting cards which had come through door, which he argued, 'could easily be used for mischievous purposes’.

Comprehensive Spending Review: Osborne's big day


The fiscal plans that our Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne announces today could shape the future of the UK for a generation.

This is not just a break with how the Government was fiscally run under Labour, this an about-face sprint in the other direction.

The Apprentice: in defence of Joanna Riley


I've lost count the amount of times I’ve been called aggressive during a discussion or a debate. But it’s a lot, an awful lot.

The Oxford dictionary meaning of 'aggressive' is, ‘ready to attack or confront’. It denotes that those subject to it might fear for their physical safety. Furthermore, it unequivocally implies that you are utterly unreasonable. As a result, not only can your arguments be thoroughly dismissed, but your character badly stained.

Tower Hamlets: Mayoral Candidates Husting


Operation Black Vote in a unique collaboration with Channel S and the support of the London Empowerment Partnership brings you the first and only televised hustings: Who Runs Tower Hamlets? You Decide!

This evening some of the mayoral candidates  -  the most powerful elected executive in Tower Hamlets  including John Griffiths,Lib Dems; Neil King,Conservative; Helal Abbas, Labour and Luftar Rahman, Independent will put their pitch over the airwaves to Tower Hamlet residents.  

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